Seagram’s V.O.

Seagrams VO 2.jpg

Very Optimal? Probably not.

Virgin Oil? Maybe, though I think I wouldn’t have drank most of it then.

Vertically Optimal? I’m going to guess no, as it predates silly marketing speak.

Whatever the meaning of V.O. in Seagram’s V.O., the whisky itself has a long and some would say.. uh… what’s a nice word for “it happened”…. whatever…. history in Canada. It’s Canadian made. Started back in 1913 when a man named Joseph E. Seagram (the E stands for effervescent) (no it doesn’t) made a special blend for his son’s birthday.

As is Canadian tradition.

It was made by Seagram’s, a purely Canuck whisky company, blended of their finest whiskies. And I didn’t italicize that because you’re blind, if you catch my drift.

103 years later, Seagram’s V.O. is made by Diageo, as the old Seagram’s company was closed down in 1992 because of the Maple Syrup wars (or maybe because of industry consolidations, I get my history mixed up).

Now it’s made in Valleyfield, Quebec, and as someone who’s never been there, I can say that it may or may not be an improvement over Waterloo. Your guess is as good as mine.

None the less, I grew up with this around every so often. Funny enough, I had to ask my parents to pick up a mini of this in the states, due to minis somehow being the Devil’s work, or whatever reason the LCBO is giving this week.

So, let’s see how this staple of Canadian binge drinking tastes, shall we?

Seagrams VO 1.jpg

Price: $25.35 (CAD) at the LCBO

Region: Canada

Abv: 40%

Colour: 2.5Y 7/8

Nose: Sour cream, potato, peanut oil, rosemary, nail polish remover

So I like potatoes. Who doesn’t? Oh, people who are allergic to potatoes. That must suck. A lot.

While this isn’t the nicest taste, and smells of vodka, mostly, at least the nail polish pain doesn’t kick in until later. So… congrats on your son getting married.

Taste: Maple, nutmeg, sugar cane, watery, peppery

Look, if you’re drinking a Canadian whisky, and it’s really sweet, watery, and peppery, then it didn’t cost you much money and it’ll help make the Diet Canada Dry taste better.

This is what that is. I wish the above was a joke, but it isn’t. This tastes like sugar water. Not bad tasting, just really, really sweet. Like that special kid who always gets you a flower but also needs a helmet wherever he goes.

And someday he’ll accomplish more than you because of a positive attitude and society generally being a better place. But don’t dwell on that, drink your booze.

Finish: Brown sugar, pepper, ham, nutmeg

Surprisingly enough, for a simple, peppery, and burning finish, this has some nice notes. Not “holy shit I should take back the mentally challenged comment” nice, but nice profile.

And why should I take it back? It’s fair. And Seagram’s V.O. sells well still, so how is my comment wrong?

That’s what I thought.

Conclusion: This isn’t going to blow your mind. But it’s not as horrible as I was expecting. it’s another Canuck whisky that is sweet, that mixes well, and doesn’t cost you too much.

Is it great? No. It burns, I don’t want to finish it, and it smells vaguely of potatoes to make me think it’s dyed vodka. That said I can’t rag on it too much, due to laws put in place in Canada. Or rather I can’t rag on it because it could be a lot worse. The finish had some nice notes.

I don’t know. Skip this, there’s better.


World Whisky review #133, Canada review #48, Whisky Network review #652

1001 Whiskies to taste before you die review #275

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